Photo by Media Center Ukraine – Odesa: Kateryna Chueva, deputy minister of culture and information policy of Ukraine
July 18, 2023, 14:45

Scythian gold from Crimean museums to be stored in the National Museum of History of Ukraine

The struggle for these exhibits has been going on since 2014. Kateryna Chueva, deputy minister of culture and information Policy of Ukraine, told this at a briefing at the Media Center Ukraine – Odesa.

“There is already a final court decision, and the part of the exhibition that was presented at the Allard Pearson Museum in Amsterdam and which included items taken from Crimean museums, will return to Ukraine. These exhibits will be stored in the National Museum of History of Ukraine. But I will not disclose the details of how and when these exhibits will return home,” – the official said.

She also added that this case is “a great victory for the history, culture and law of Ukraine”. This case will serve as a reference point for lawyers when Ukraine starts working on the return of stolen collections from Ukrainian museums during the full-scale invasion, Chueva thinks.

In February 2014, the collection of “Scythian gold” was taken to Amsterdam to participate in the exhibition “Crimea: Gold and Secrets of the Black Sea”, which was held at the Allard Pearson Museum. When Russia annexed the peninsula, it became unclear whether these objects should be transferred to museums in occupied Crimea or Ukraine.

On 14 December 2016, an Amsterdam court decided to return the Scythian gold to Ukraine, but in January 2017, Crimean museums began the process of appealing the decision. In 2021, the court in Amsterdam ruled in favour of Ukraine.

“The Crimean Museums” appealed to the Supreme Court of the Netherlands, which ruled on 9 June 2023 that the treasures are the cultural heritage of all of Ukraine. Now that the Supreme Court has made this decision, the dispute is finally over.

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